Death penalty is the execution of a person by judicial process as a punishment for an offense. Crimes that can result in a death penalty are known as capital crimes or capital offences.
The topic of death penalty always invokes mixed reactions. Whereas some people believe that death penalty is to be awarded in appropriate cases, there are others who oppose the idea of death penalty under any circumstances.
The United States remains in the minority of nations in the world that still uses death as penalty for certain crimes. Many see the penalty as barbaric and against American values. Others see it as a very important tool in fighting violent pre-meditated murder.
People who oppose death penalty do so for a number of reasons. Opponents of death penalty feel that it is barbaric and violates the “cruel and unusual” clause in the Bill of Rights. They also point out that the financial cost to taxpayers of capital punishment is several times that of keeping someone in prison for life. Moreover, opponents feel that if civilization is to advance, the society needs to move away from the “eye for an eye” revenge mentality. Another strong reason why people oppose death penalty is due to the possibility of innocent men and women being put to death. Opponents also argue that death penalty is useless in that it does not bring the victim back to life.
On the other hand, people who support death penalty reason that death penalty creates another form of crime deterrent and that justice is better served if death penalty is awarded. Supporters of death penalty also argue that it provides a deterrent for prisoners already serving a life sentence. Death penalty also prevents prisoners from getting parole or escaping and thereby effectively prevents criminals from getting another chance to kill.